As part of the sculptural outdoor classroom that I am working on at the moment for a school here in Dublin, I was asked to incorporate a tree somewhere into the design to represent the ‘Family Tree’. The ‘Family Tree’ is a song which has come to symbolise the ‘Croí na Scoile’ (The heart of the school). I was also asked to give the students a chance to have some input into the outdoor classroom so that they can make it their own (a very important part of the process for sure)
Happy New Year everyone. I feel the need to write a new blog post as I have been neglecting to do so over the past six months or so. Looking back at 2012 it has been a mixed year. While battling our way though a severe recession I reflected on some of the positives of 2012. Although I had a long and quiet winter and spring, 2012 did bring along a few projects that I am very happy with. I did get to make a stone mosaic panel that I had been wanting to make for some time. My mi
On the fourth weekend of September I once again headed off to Inis Oirr (Inisheer) on the Aran Islands for this year’s Feile na gCloch (Festival of Stone). The festival is organised and run by the country’s most knowledgeable and experienced drystone waller, Patrick McAfee, in conjunction with the wonderful Marie Mannion, Heritage Officer of Galway County Council and Paddy Crowe, manager of the Inis Oirr Cooperative. Every year this event seems to get bigger and bigger, as do
Last weekend the DSWAI had a meet up in County Clare as we were invited by quarry owner David O’ Connor of Liscannor Flagstones Quarries to come build some stone features at his quarry in Miltown Malbay.
Despite the long drive, I was looking forward to the trip, as it would give me the chance to take the scenic route through The Burren landscape, a stunning part of the country I have not been to in many years. The Burren is a karst-landscape region or alvar, measuring approxi
There is something very special about creating a piece of art in stone to celebrate a loved ones life. Probably the most unique and moving example of this is the recently completed Kerry Landman Memorial. The wall is situated at Island Lake Conservation Area on Hurontario Street South and is open to the public seven days a week. The Memorial Forest Trail runs through part of the conservation area and takes you through the ‘Dods and McNair Memorial Forest’ where the dry stone
On Monday a few of the members of the association met up at the foot of The Rock of Cashel to promote both the DSWA of Ireland and Fellow association member Tom Pollard’s Fly a flag for Ireland campaign, for a segment to be shown on an RTE documentary “How to be Irish” Tom’s Fly a flag for Ireland campaign is looking to put some colour, positivity and pride back in our Country. Showing our elected representatives and European neighbours that we are a proud and colourful inde
As it is Valentines Day today I thought it would be a good time to talk a little bit about one of my favourite colours to use in the landscape. The colour red.
Red has more personal associations than any other colour. Recognized as a stimulant, red is inherently exciting and the amount of red is directly related to the level of energy perceived. Red draws attention, and a keen use of red as an accent can immediately focus attention on a particular element. It also increases e
Last weekend I attended my first dry stone walling workshop on Inis Oírr Island. And I am already looking forward to going back next year. For those of you who don’t know where Inis Oírr (Inisheer) is, it is the smallest of the three islands that make up the Aran Islands in Galway Bay. As a location for a dry stone walling workshop, I could not imagine a better place, as Inis Oírr has some of the finest examples of drystone walls in the country. Altogether the Aran Islands ha
Just a very quick post to promote some very interesting things happening this week. This week is Heritage Week 2011 from 20th to the 28th of August. Coordinated by The Heritage Council, Heritage Week is part of European Heritage Days in which over 40 countries participate each year. I was down at the lovely Drimnagh Castle today in the heart of Dublin City, where renowned stonemason, teacher and author Patrick McAfee held an arch building demonstration. This hour long demonst
So I have talked about stone benches on a number of occasions, and now I am going to talk about them some more.
I just had a lady asking me for more information on some of my stone benches, and while compiling the information for her I thought, why not kill two birds with one stone and write a blog post about it.
So here it is! Stone Benches.
Enrich your garden with one of Stone Arts trademark stone benches. Each one of these immensely popular benches is completely unique a
Garden Theatres Although there are many grand Garden Theatres and huge impressive amphitheatres out there in the world, they are not something you find very often in normal residential garden design. They are however, something I like very much. So I will leave the many grand garden theatres and the huge impressive amphitheatres for another post for another day. Today I am going to talk about the intimate and sometimes modest (but just as effective) garden theatre. Growing up
Stone River is a project by award wining landscape architect and stonemason, Jon Piasecki. Jon Piasecki is a graduate of Harvard University (with a Masters in Landscape Architecture in 1995), and Cornell University (with a B.S. in forest ecology in 1989). In 2004, he received the Prince Charitable Trust Rome Prize awarded by the American Academy in Rome, and was in residence at the Academy in 2005. For this project Jon was commissioned by prominent landscape architect Michael
A few months back I wrote a post ‘Stone Chairs. Some ancient some not so ancient…Yet….’ in which I mentioned that one of my favorite things to build are stone seats. Well here is a stone seating area I have just completed and the process I used to create it. So recently a lady in down in Co. Kildare asked me if I could transform this old area of her garden into one of my stone seating areas, so of course I was only too happy to oblige. My delivery of stone. So when the old ma
One of my favourite things to build is stone seats. There is something very special about sitting in a stone seat, it feels very grand, almost throne like. When building stone seats, a portion of my time is spent sitting, making sure that they are comfortable and positioned right. I must admit I have on occasion sat there wondering ‘will this seat still be here in a few hundred years. Will archaeologists be examining it to try and discover what kind of ceremonial uses it once